Can You Grill Frozen Hot Dogs – The Complete Guide

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Nothing’s easier than popping your leftover hot dogs back into the freezer for another day. What’s hard though, is reheating them again, or even worse cooking them after they had been frozen.

So the real question here is, Can you grill frozen hot dogs?

On a general note, grilling already cooked hot dogs is so much easier and more efficient than frozen raw hot dogs. But, unfortunately, nothing’s perfect, as reheating a frozen already cooked hot dog most probably will lead to an overcooked hot dog on the outside with a cold inside. Yup, not pretty. And of course, I don’t need to tell you that the frozen raw ones must be defrosted first for them to cook equally.

That’s why I took it upon myself to share with you the best ways to deal with frozen hot dogs.

What are hot dogs?

They are basically the relatives of sausages, made of processed meat instead of minced meat. But not only red meat. There is in fact quite a variety of meats. Turkey, chicken, beef, or pork with all the spices and smokiness you desire.

Quality can range significantly between different kinds especially since recently this was the main concern when it came to hot dogs. People started focusing on the meat quality more than the taste, that’s why food companies made it their goal to achieve the best possible taste and quality, ultimately making hot dogs irresistible.

Can hot dogs be frozen?

Yes of course, in fact, most types of hot dogs are already stored frozen so that you can either defrost and cook them immediately or just store them right back in the freezer to be cooked whenever.

Despite the fact that leftover cooked hot dogs can also be frozen, yet they can only withstand two months in the freezer after which it doesn’t really taste good or hold any of its previous texture. Make sure they are tightly locked in a zip-lock bag though and no air or moisture can reach them.

How to thaw/defrost frozen hot dogs?

Once the precooked frozen hot dogs thaw, you won’t actually have any trouble reheating them. That’s why I am going to share with you all the best ways to successfully thaw your frozen hot dogs quickly and efficiently.

Using cold water:

You don’t need any sort of special equipment to actually thaw your hot dogs using this method. All you need to do is just put the zip lock or freezer bag containing the hot dogs in a bowl filled with cold water and leave it there. Ideally, It should take about 60 minutes to completely thaw. It’s better to cook it immediately after thawing.

Using the microwave:

This method almost takes no time. All you have to do is just transfer a microwavable plate containing the hot dogs to the microwave after covering the plate with a paper towel. Adjust the temperature to “Defrost” and check whether the hot dogs are fully reheated every 30 seconds. Cook them after they are done.

Using the refrigerator:

Yes, I agree. It’s slow. However, it’s the safest especially if you have raw hot dogs. You just need to leave your hot dogs in the lower shelf in the fridge for twenty-four hours or at least overnight to thaw.

What is the best way to cook hot dogs?

It’s always tempting to just grab a few hot dogs and heat them in the microwave for a few seconds and snack on them. Honestly, I don’t judge you. But, I assure you turning simple hot dogs to a full meal is more rewarding.

Let me show you how to properly cook them:

  1. Start by choosing high-quality, filled with spices organic hot dogs.
  2. Add the hot dogs to a pan containing a small amount of water and cover it while it’s on the flame. Leave them until they cook.
  3. Crisp up the exterior by grilling the hot dogs on a grill or putting them to roast in the oven.
  4. Prepare your perfect sandwich starting with a soft, light, and rich bun.
  5. Add on top of the hot dogs whatever toppings you prefer. Really it can work with absolutely anything. Just please don’t forget to add the sautéed, caramelized onions!
  6. Fry some fries on the side, prepare a delicious potato side dish, or simply a buttered-up and juicy corns.

Don’t make these 9 common mistakes:

It should be quite easy cooking your hot dogs after successfully defrosting them, right?

Well, unfortunately, people tend to make these common mistakes which usually can mess up either the cooking process of hot dogs or the final result.

1- Skipping the defrosting step

Four words. Burnt outside and cold inside.
So no just because they are easy to be cooked doesn’t mean they will cook as soon as you take them off from the freezer.

2- You are not bathing them in water first

This step might seem unnecessary, but trust me, it will give you a whole different hot dog experience. Leaving your hot dogs to simmer for a few minutes prior to grilling them make them softer on the inside and crusty on the outside.

3- Wrongly splitting the hot dogs

There is nothing wrong with leaving a few slits (about 4 on a 6-inch long hot dog) In fact, it results in a crispy exterior and retains all the juices inside. What’s wrong though, is splitting all the way to the middle which results in losing the moisture and more charring.

4- The charcoal on the girl is still black

Hot dogs don’t need much cooking, that’s why they need to be grilled on grey coal, not a direct or high flame one. Just grease the hot grill before putting them on it.

5- Buying any type of hot dog

We agreed before that hot dogs vary in their type, whether it’s the meat type itself or the fillings added with the meat. That’s why always go for the high-quality 100% beef hot dogs, not the half pork half beef ones. Usually, the beef hot dogs contain more fat percentage in them, making them more flavorful and easier to cook.

6- The heat is simply off

Hot dogs are sensitive and very easy to cook. However, they require a certain range to come off perfect. It’s usually between 400-425 degrees. So not too hot and not too low, just in between.

7- You don’t flip the hot dogs

Hot dogs are not patties, they actually need to be flipped constantly and on all sides so that they could cook evenly and crisp up from every side. Also, to avoid the bursting of the casing of the hot dog itself.

8- Forgetting to add some delicious extras

Some people, unfortunately, miss out on some flavorful toppings that take this simple snack to a whole new level of deliciousness. Don’t get me wrong, sticking to the basic hot dogs with mustard is amazing, but adding some extras like coleslaw, pickled onions, and peppers gives a heavenly flavor.

9- A not so good buns

It just doesn’t make sense following all these steps to make the most perfect hot dogs while neglecting the buns at the same time, does it?

Of course not. That’s why you need to buy freshly made, soft buns and grill them on the grill with the hot dog for a minute just to semi toast the bread and spread a tiny bit of butter on it. Mmmm.

Related questions:

Are hot dogs better grilled or boiled?

Well, it depends. They tend to be softer and more mushy when boiled. While they firm up and dry a bit when grilled immediately. That’s why it’s better to combine both.

Are hot dogs already cooked?

Most of the hot dogs’ brands comes already cooked, but it’s not entirely safe to consume without reheating them first.

Do hot dogs float when done?

It depends on the type of hot dogs. More fatty ones float because of their fat content. More meaty ones sink.

Can you eat raw hot dogs?

It’s not advised to eat raw or even partially cooked ones. They pause the same hazard as any raw meat, they might have bacteria likely causing food-borne diseases.


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